When the ache was just too much, I’d skip
down the hill to the slip where you
and a small boat were always waiting.
There, we would draw out the sloop
into the glassy-eyed river
and sit for hours in silence.
The fish would swim up to the hull,
coming up just short of the surface
then turning away again—
their white bellies barely visible
writing surrender, surrender on the water.
Maybe there never was any river. Maybe the only true thing is
that I would come back to the island, lift its lush grasses
and earth to myself and call it my body.
Maybe the only true thing is that you held
my lolling head between your hands and whispered:
I await our reckoning.